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Andy McDonald signs four-year contract extension with St. Louis @NHLdotcom

ST. LOUIS - The St. Louis Blues have locked up a key member of their franchise.

Andy McDonald has signed an US$18.8-million, four-year contract extension with the NHL team.

"The St. Louis Blues realize how integral Andy is to the future of our organization," said Blues president John Davidson. "He's a top-line centre who will play a major role in the development of our team."

The 31-year-old has been sidelined for most of the season with a fractured left leg. McDonald has missed the past 35 games with a broken left leg, but practised Monday and could play Tuesday when the Blues host Vancouver.

McDonald was the team leader with 18 points (6-12) in 16 games when he suffered the injury on Nov. 16.

He's earning $3.33 million in the final season of his current contract. The new deal runs through 2012-13.

He would have been an unrestricted free agent on July 1.

"My first priority was to stay in St. Louis and continue my career as a Blue as the organization has treated me great since Day 1," said McDonald. "I'm excited with the direction that this franchise is going and we have nothing but good things ahead of us."

The Blues acquired McDonald from Anaheim last season in a trade that sent Doug Weight the other way.

McDonald was a key member of the Ducks team that won the Stanley Cup in 2007, scoring a team-leading 10 goals during the playoff run.

In 456 career NHL games, he has 112 goals and 313 points.

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